Have you ever been in a situation where your instincts are all riled up about something, but you can't lay your fingers on any facts to support what your instincts are telling you? And so, after a great deal of frustration and perhaps some lingering doubt, you go about your business. But then a few years later, an incident happens or a fact gets revealed that shows your instincts weren't that far off after all. And about the only thing to be said is 'I told you so.'
      Back in 2001, my instincts began to get all riled when Vice-President Cheney started pointing the finger at Saddam Hussein right after 9/11 occurred. It was Cheney -- former CEO of Halliburton, which provided oil-related services -- who created the lie that Hussein was connected to the 9/11 terrorists and al Qaeda. And Cheney served under -- or was he the one leading -- President George W. Bush, a Texan  connected to oil.
      It was my instincts kicking in that told me it was about the oil. While multinational oil companies were buying Iraqi oil through the Iraqi Oil-for-Food program, they did not control the source. Hussein controlled the oil and the Bush administration  and the multinational oil companies they represented-- they were not elected by the American people back in 2000 -- were going to have none of that.
      All throughout 2002, the Bush administration lied and scammed the American people into thinking that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction and were trying to get some Niger "yellow cake" for atomic weapons. Bush, Cheney and their cohorts invented all kinds of fantasies and stuck with them and repeated them in spite of all of the evidence that there were no WMDs and the Niger story was not true. Bush and Cheney wanted us to look at the sun and believe it was the moon. They denigrated scientific    principles because scientific principles often showed Bush and Cheney they were wrong. Cheney and Bush were looking for absolute power. And they intensified the drumbeat for war and the American mainstream media fell right in line.
      Bush, et. al. kept emphasizing that the U.S. was going to free the Iraqi people and bring democracy to the Middle East. My instincts kept telling me that Bush wanted the oil, which he vehemently denied over and over again.
      In Fenruary 2003, Bush humiliated Colin Powell by getting him to get up before the United Nations to present the U.S. case for war with fabricated information. Meanwhile, the U.N. WMD inspectors could find no WMDs. Bush declared the U.N. inspectors were duped by Hussein as he kept on duping the American people with specious reasons for going to war.
      Cheney declared that the Iraq people would greet U.S. troops as liberators. And then we invaded Iraq on March 20, 2003 and Bush declared victory aboard the USS Lincoln on May 1 with a banner proclaiming "Mission Accomplished" behind him.
      Bush and Cheney were both wrong. Soon after American troops showed the Iraqi people they knew very little about Islam and Iraqi customs, the American troops were seen as a foreign occupation force and the suicide bombs began. Four-and-a-half years after Bush declared victory, 3,748 American troops have been killed and thousands have been maimed and wounded and tens of thousands of Iraqis have been killed.
      Right now, on December 13, 2007, no one could say that the Iraqi people are free and democracy exists in Iraq. While violence has been reduced in Iraq since the American "surge" in soldiers began  earlier this year, it remains to be seen what happens when the number of troops once more declines. It could be the eye in the hurricane. And the Iraqi government enacts no significant legislation and how can one say that democracy exists when a majority of Iraqis want the U.S. forces out, yet still they remain?
      But on some levels, that doesn't matter because it was about the oil after all. On November 26, CBSNEWS.com ran a story titled "Iraq Agrees to Long-Term U.S. Presence." The story talked about an agreement signed by Bush and Iraqi president al-Maliki. In the agreement, as reported by CBSNEWS.com, Iraq offered "the U.S. a continued military presence in Iraq, as well as favorable business interests (such as investment opportunities for American companies), in return for guarantees to Iraq's future security."
      The story went on to further say "Preferential treatment for U.S. investors could provide a huge windfall if Iraq can achieve enough stability to exploit its vast oil resources."
      It was about the oil after all. Now some strategic thinkers might say that it was important for the U.S. to secure control over the third largest known oil reserves in the world for its own strategic and national interests forget that Iraq was a sovereign      nation. While I think this line of reasoning is ultimately immoral, it also makes me wonder whose interests are actually being protected. Recently, our gasoline prices have been gyrating up and down depending upon the latest news out of the Middle East. Well, if the price of oil is dependent upon a market price, then what good does it do the American people who controls the oil? If the multinational oil companies are going to be pumping oil out of Iraq and selling it to the highest bidder, how does that benefit the American people who are footing the bill to fight the war to the tune of $477 billion to date? That oil could go anywhere.
      Just about the only way this makes sense to me is that a bunch of Texas oilmen got control of the U.S. government through a rigged election and used the U.S. military like a mercenary force to fight a war to increase the oil reserves under the control of multinational oil companies that hold no real allegiance to the United States. Private interests took control of the federal government to enhance their own personal financial standing. Is that what the founders of this great country intended? I don't think so.
Vol. 2 No. 25                            Dec. 12, 2007
One gift received, one waiting
Organ donations in the African American community
  Reflections/Jonathan Gramling
                                           
Iraqi (oil) future

December 12, 2007
Stories and Columns


*
The Literary Divide/
"When elephants fight, it is the grass that suffers
!"
by Dr. Paul Barrows

*
Ruben Anthony discusses Phase 2 of I-94 reconstruction,
by Jonathan Gramling

*
Taste of Asia Restaurant,
by Jonathan Gramling

*
Spotlight on energy: Every little bit saves $$ (Part 3),
by Jonathan Gramling

*
Simple Things: Nearsighted,
by Lang Kenneth Haynes

*
Asian Wisconzine: The doctor is IN (Dr. Violeta Singson),
by Heidi M. Pascual

*
Politicas de hoy: Madero y la revolucion Mexicana,
por Alfonso Zepeda Capistran

*
Voices: McKinney and the Other America,
by Dr. Jean Daniels

*
"Famous Dave": Nothing's gonna stop him now (Part 2),
by Jonathan Gramling

*
Greek II Greek at 401 N. Lake St.,
by Jonathan Gramling

*
China Dispatch: Teaching English in Hefei,
by Andrew Gramling

*
The Steeles at Overture Center for the Arts,
by Jonathan Gramling

*
Hugo Chavez gano perdiendo,
por Praxedis Sanchez

* Tiawanaku celebrates its Pena anniversary of Latin American Dance,
by Jonathan Gramling

*
Otis Remembered,
by Enid Glenn



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